I was asked once what happens when you run out of ideas? When you reach the threshold of your imagination? To which I responded; who says there’s a limit or an end?
I think just beyond the edge, that liminal point is never within reach if you don’t want it to be. It’s like in a dream when you run toward something and it never gets closer. A person who paints isn’t just going to run out of things to paint, a singer will always have a tune, a poets words will never run out. Not unless they choose to. Creativity in my humble opinion is like a muscle. Work it out and it gets/stays strong, ignore it and leave it unused and it will atrophy.
Neither Anne nor Valery questioned her sudden departure for a sudden last-minute American coastline cruise out of Nova Scotia. She blamed the Baylor incident and him being on bail, they didn’t need to know about last nights crazy backyard attack yet. She promised to be back by Sunday. A promise she had to keep since her job was on the line. Calls done, she took the phone out to Cal and went back to her room and spread the file out. Six pictures and descriptions. She could change the image but not the object itself. The car still had to be a car but any type would do as long as it was blue.
“Okay brain, let’s get creative.” She stared at the pictures, The blue car, the large apple, the square clock, an olive, the number 7 and the hand that had to be hidden and subliminal. “Tricky.”
Three hours later she stopped for lunch then went back to her room and skipped dinner. She came out four hours later no further ahead then when she went in that morning. Nothing was working and nothing looked right. Her mind was unsettled, she was at the threshold of creativity and she needed a break.
Cal stood with his arm up on the floor to ceiling window frame looking out at the great view of the lake from so high up. He had a fantastic profile and, she could see his shapely back and shoulder muscles though his blue shirt.
“How’s work?” He didn’t turn around.
“Fine.” She cleared her throat and sat hard on the couch staring at the black screen of the tv.
“You’re as good a liar as you are sweet-tempered.”
“I’m not normally so bitchy.”
He turned and looked at her. “Oh?”
“Well for starters I’m not usually assaulted then again a few days later. I’ve never run someone over with my car nor do I drive so recklessly. I also never lie to my friends.” She crossed her arms. “Until I met you that is.”
“I’ll put a pin in the usually. He sighed and sat beside her. “It was a stroke of luck that Baylor was at that bar. It’s not one that cops frequent.”
“Duh. It’s why Val chose it.”
“I’ll put a pin in that one too.” He narrowed his eyes at her pouty face. “Good luck or bad Sasha it’s as close as we’ve ever gotten to catching the guy. Even if I screwed it up. Now we have concrete evidence of his true nature, he broke bail terms within twelve hours and.” He stopped when she sighed heavily. “I’m sorry you’re stuck here with me.”
“It’s not you specifically. I’m just, it’s just a bad couple of weeks for me to begin with you just have terrible timing, Baylor has the worst possible timing.”
“I’m running out of pins. Let’s go back to the first. Why did you say ‘not usually assaulted’?”
She shook her head. “I hate talking to you, you pick everything apart.”
“It’s my job.”
“Right blue boy. So then you would know if you looked up my record.”
“Let’s say I’ve been busy and now I’m stranded in a hotel away from my desk, fill me in.”
“Is it important?”
“Yes.” He didn’t say why. It had nothing to do with the case.
“A long time ago I was assaulted by three men. I ended up charged since I hurt one of them badly and they all claimed he wasn’t in on the phony assault and they didn’t intend to hurt me.”
“What sort of assault?”
He relaxed. Attempted was better than actual.
“But because there wasn’t any rape and I don’t bruise easily they got off with community service except Bobbet jr. He pressed charges and I got community service. I was underage.”
Cal cringed. “Okay that is horrible. Next pin, why a bar with no cops?”
“Same reason for the bad timing.” She glared at him. “It’s none of your business and since it’s not public record I’m not explaining.”
“I’m not your enemy Sasha. You don’t seem the criminal type so what happened?”
“My ass-hat ex fiancée was a cop, you’re all tight in your little coppy groups. Therefore, I avoid all the old hangouts. I assume they’re all still the same since you guys never drop a habit.”
“That was seething with contempt. Should I start lumping you in with all blondes everywhere?”
She rubbed her face. “Point taken. Sorry. Like I said I’m feeling a little unlike myself lately and frankly you make a good punching bag.”
“I bet I do. I seem to represent all that’s wrong in your microcosm of self-pity.” He got up and went to the mini bar and came back with six mini bottles.
Sasha’s creative-block is self-inflicted and circumstantial.
My advice about Liminal.
There is no limit, no threshold to imagination unless you set one. Create away.
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